Today's Table Talk question comes from body tempering sensation Donnie Thompson. He asks Dave, Why were you such a dick to me in 1998 when I met you and Lou for breakfast for the first time? You hurt my feelings.

The Background

Putting aside the light ribbing from Donnie, Dave starts off by providing some context for this question.

Dave’s relationship with Donnie began when they were both gym owners. As members of a close community, they would talk on the phone to trade training regimens and tips. Dave recalls one early conversation where he told Donnie to do sled drags, only to find out that he was already dragging sleds around the perimeter of his 90,000 square foot training complex.

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As he mentioned in an earlier Table Talk segment, when Dave sees potential in someone he does not mince words in regards to what they need to do in order to maximize that potential. And sometimes this can make him come across as a little bit of a dick.

So when Donnie came out to visit Westside for the first time, weighing in at less than three hundred pounds, Dave didn’t sugarcoat his advice: you need to put on some f***ing weight.

From Dave’s perspective, here is a guy that played football at 300lbs, has the bone structure of an elite powerlifter, desires to be a world-class athlete, yet weighs half of what the best in the sport do. In what is now remembered as a tense breakfast meeting, Donnie showed humility and respectfully asked for information on how much and how fast he needed to gain.

Donnie, it appears, took this advice to heart. Dave didn’t hear from Donnie as much after that, and he would come to learn that it was because Donnie was finally beginning to give 100% to his powerlifting training program.

The Results

The next time Dave and Donnie met, probably at the York IPA worlds, Dave remembers being flabbergasted at the size of who would become one of the worlds best powerlifters. Since that infamous breakfast, Donnie had managed to put on at least 120 pounds.

Like any good coach, Dave doesn’t give himself too much credit for Donnie’s later success. He knows that Donnie would have figured out that he needed to put on weight to compete at the highest level of powerlifting. Still, it goes to show that any good student interested in maximizing their potential can speed up the process by staying humble and listening to the advice of those more experienced in the sport.

Dave closes this segment by mentioning something Donnie might not want to hear: he has pictures of Donnie in the days when he was just a scrawny 240-pound beginner. Maybe Donnie should remember that next time before he throws some shade on Dave’s Instagram posts.

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